A Conversation with t1na (Martina Stipan)

DG: Hey Martina, how are you? How about we kick-start this Conversation by getting to know a little about you?
t1na: Hello everyone, I’m a bit tired as I’m writing this, but good in general. I’m Martina Stipan, an 18 years old graphic design, digital art, multimedia and creative stuff enthusiast. You may mostly find landscape matte-paintings and photo manipulations on my page.

Martina Stipan

DG: You go by the nick t1na, mind sharing the story behind it? Did someone give you this name or you chose it for yourself?
t1na: It’s nothing special. Since, my name is ‘Martina’, ‘t1na’ is just an abbreviation of it. And yeah, ‘tina’ was already taken on DeviantArt, hence ‘1’ for ‘i’ 😛 Everyone’s been calling me ‘Tina’ since I was very young.

DG: About your artwork, I had read that a lot of your concepts are inspired from your childhood memories. I and my readers had be so excited to know about your childhood.
t1na: I mostly combine fantasy with reality. Maybe those fantastic elements that inspire people to always do and achieve more. Life would be so dull without a bit of imagination or daydreaming. I assume, a lot of kids must have had a pretty amazing childhood. It’s that feeling of experiencing a new day and new adventures that come along with it. As a kid, you’ve that feeling of wonder-lust and amazement for every little thing. I mostly do landscapes because they got everything I would imagine: whole new world and many things to explore.

'Childhood" Art Progress
‘Childhood” Art Progress

DG: The internet knows how great is the quality of your photo manipulation, how did you even get into this form of design?
t1na: I got into photo manipulation in 2008-09. That was the year when I got internet connection for the first time. That was the time when I explored similar artworks on the internet and that was the time when I first opened Photoshop 7.0. I was 11 odd something, And I was pretty much newbie in design. Then, I didn’t quite understand the concept of photo manipulation, but it seemed extraordinary to me. It was in 2012 when I improved a lot in photo manipulation and slowly started learning about this technique called matte-painting.

'Illusion' by Martina Stipan

DG: For how long have you been doing photo manipulations? Also, it had be awesome if you could run us through your design process.
t1na: I’ve been playing with computer graphics for 6 good years now, but 4 really active years (with a lot of improvement). It was in 2012 when I started my YouTube channel where I used to upload my weekly artwork progress. An year after, in 2013, I quit recording making of’s and started doing photo manipulations and matte-painting off  YouTube. Since then I’ve tried to create as many artworks as my schedule allows.

DG: Have you got your hands dirty at graphic, print or user interface designing? If yes, how did you like it?
t1na: Yes, I did a bit of everything. I was doing graphic design even before digital art. Personally, it gives me immense pleasure when I make something good, but it’s digital art where I find myself completely comfortable. I really like doing logos, web design, business cards. Actually, this is what mostly helps me earn my daily bread. People mostly need graphic design for their companies and digital art for their personal pleasure or home decor.

'Dreaming of snow' by Martina Stipan

DG: I’ve seen a lot of great designers who don’t share their work online or are just tired of presenting it. What’s your say on the importance of sharing your work with the folks online? Is it okay to term it as the art of selling oneself?
t1na: If you’re doing art just for you, it’s completely fine not sharing it over the internet. I like to share my artwork with people, they’re pretty amazing interpreting it in their own way. I get to see a lot of different views on one particular artwork. That’s why it’s hard for me to talk about my artwork, I prefer leaving that on all of you.
On the other hand, if you’re trying to make profit from it, sharing it on social networks is really a good way to start off. A good amount of people on social media follow my artwork now. It took me 6 long years to get there though. Hence, I recommend you to start early.

DG: Amongst so many awesome designs of yours, which one is your personal favorite and which one has managed to to gain the most number of applauds?
t1na: It’s true that there are some that I can relate more with as compared to the others, but every new artwork I make becomes my new favorite. It’s that 2-3 hours that I spend completing them that makes me already bored of looking at them. It’s not good to look at one artwork for that long, haha 🙂
The artwork that managed to pull off the most attention is ‘Tree swing’. It has been online for 2 years now and it has over 15,000+ favorites on my DeviantArt page, not to mention how many times it has been shared all over the internet.

'Tree swing' by Martina Stipan

DG: There are heck lot of aspiring photo manipulators out there, including me, still trying to get a hang of it. What do you feel is important to learn this art?
t1na: I believe, it’s all about the technique. It’s about blending many photos in a way to make it look realistic, which is maybe hard to do. Other than that, it’s also about developing your own style and technique, hopefully unique and easily recognizable. It’s also a lot about being inspired and being able to spread that idea on your digital canvas.

'Team work' by Martina Stipan

DG: What do you plan to do next with your design career? Any collaborations or something out of the blue?
t1na: I don’t have anything in mind as of now. I plan to finish my high school for media technician, then go to multimedia college. After finishing it, I’ll see what I can do. That’s all I’ve planned for now. I’m that kind of person that takes a lot of last minute decisions. That way I’m pretty quick at it 😉

Martina Stipan's work set-up
Martina Stipan’s work set-up

DG: We had love to seek your advice on being a better designer and a better person as a whole. Kindly enlighten us 🙂

I would just encourage everyone to work harder if you want to accomplish your goals and don’t give up if you really love it. Simple advice for being a better person: spread joy, happiness, stay open-minded, tolerate others in spite of differences and be kind. That doesn’t require much of philosophy.

'Fire shimmer' by Martina Stipan

Rapid Fire Round:

If Photoshop didn’t exist, what would be your go-to tool for photo manipulating?
Probably, Corel Painter or GIMP (I don’t know many programs except Photoshop).

Nudity in design is like ________.
Renaissance art.

Favorite superhero or cartoon character?
Does Yoda count?

Team Cap or Team Iron Man?
Iron Man.

Favorite designers?
Jonas De Ro, Andre Wallin.

I can be found _____ on the beach.
Relaxing, because why not?

I would go bonkers if ________.
People wouldn’t let me have my peace, let me sleep and do art and design.

Fantasy is ______.
Everything you can imagine.

Darshan is ______.
Very creative with questions. I really liked the Conversation. One big like for you!

'Light' by Martina Stipan

Martina is young, enthusiastic and such a talented artist. I love how creative she is with her photo manipulations and matte-paintings. If she keeps on doing what she’s doing, she would be one of the most sought-out digital artists in the near future, that I can say without a doubt. The Conversation was amazing, Martina. It was great getting to know what goes on in the head of a fantasy photo manipulator. Wish you all the very best with your upcoming designs!

All of Martina’s designs can be found on her flickr page. She regularly shares her artwork and other inside pictures on her Facebook page. You may also follow her on DeviantArt, that’s where it all started.

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